The Start of Something New

It's Not Just The Year That's New

Photo by Hillie Chan on Unsplash

Happy New Year!

I’d like to thank all of you for signing up to my email list over the past few months. You don’t know how humbled I am to have so many of you following my work. It blows my mind!

That said, I’ve often treated this forum as an afterthought. One of my New Year’s resolutions was to engage more here and offer different content than just my Medium articles.

Going forward, I’m going to change a few things. Every Monday I will release an email consisting of curated articles, videos and anything else I find interesting from around the web. This could be a lengthy piece on the complexity of global supply chains (seriously!), to an article I enjoyed on Medium.

I want to share ideas and articles that I find interesting and pass them on to you, the reader.

As well as this new weekly email, I will still share the occasional Medium article. Plus, I’m going to share a monthly newsletter detailing the best books I’ve been reading.

If you’re a follower of Ryan Holiday, you’ll know he does something similar. His insights and recommendations have led to me reading many fascinating books I’d never heard of and about topics, I hadn’t come across before.

I’ll share up to five books a month, explain why I enjoyed them, what you can learn from these books and why you should read them. Reading is an activity I treasure and one that has enriched my life. If more of us read, I truly believe the world would be a better place.

As the saying goes, you don’t what you don’t know. The best way to rectify that is to read more books!

In the long run, I may look at changing up the format of some of my emails, but that’s the plan for the foreseeable future. I hope you stick around to join me on this journey.

To get things started here’s the first of my new weekly Monday emails. Hopefully, by next week I’ll have thought of a catchy tagline for this weekly email!

Supply chains are complicated

I wasn’t joking when I said I’d share an article about global supply chains! As an Englishman who opposed Brexit, this topic has featured heavily in the news here. Goods travelling from the UK to the EU, vice versa and even between mainland UK and Northern Ireland are now subject to checks and extra paperwork.

While we were in the EU, the Customs Union and Single Market took care of this. Now that we’re out, many of us on this small island we call home, have realised how reliant we are on imports for the majority of our food. For a topic that affects all of our lives no matter where you live, little is known about the networks which allow goods to move from one place to another, crisscrossing large swathes of the planet.

This article in BBC Future is a fascinating look at a network we don’t understand, and perhaps those running it might not understand either.

The Invisible Network That Keeps The World Running

An Early Warning on Trump

I read this article by the excellent Anne Applebaum back in June. It’s a long read, but it’s worth it. After the events of the past few days, many of us have been left shocked by what we witnessed.

I never thought I’d see American citizens storming Congress in an attempt to take action over a free and fair election. In the supposed ‘greatest democracy in the world’, this is an event you’d associate with a banana republic.

Applebaum was on the money when she wrote this about the people who have helped and enabled, not just Trump, but demagogues across the planet. The scenes of the past few days have hammered home the importance of the character of the people you elect to the highest offices. As voters, it’s a responsibility we all bear and one we should take seriously.

History Will Judge The Complicit

Under Pressure

Sport is a big part of my life. Without football and other sports to watch during the pandemic, I’m not sure it would have been as easy to get through the past year. That said, one of the most infuriating aspects of following sports is when your team or a player you support loses or fails.

In Sports terminology, this is often referred to as choking. It’s an interesting concept. Professional athletes, who have trained all their lives to be the best in their respective sport, are paid a fortune in some cases, yet when the pressure is on, they crumble.

Why does this happen? Well, this excellent article on The Guardian’s Long Read section goes some way to explaining why. The short answer? As much as we put figures like Messi, LeBron James and Rafa Nadal on a pedestal, they’re still human like me and you.

Under Pressure: Why Athletes Choke

That’s all for now! I hope you enjoy the articles I’ve shared as much as I did. If you have any thoughts on the new format or you want to comment about one of the articles, don’t hesitate to leave your thoughts below. I’d love to hear your feedback!

Until next time!

Tom